Tag Archive for 'Anita Rosen'

Don’t make a business wardrobe faux pas

The late comedian, George Gobel, once joked that he felt like the whole world was a tuxedo and he was a pair of brown shoes. Some small businesses may be starting to relate due to their uncompetitive Internet capability.

 

Not too long ago, a national survey indicated that half of small businesses don’t have a website. This number is difficult to believe, but it’s probably pretty accurate. Some business owners still don’t understand that a website is not just for selling things online, the way Amazon does. More often than not, customers just want to find out who you are, what you sell, why they should care and how to contact you.

 

Recently, when we asked our audience about their websites in an online poll, six of 10 of our respondents said their website is a critical part of their business. And a little more than a third said they have a website, but it was just an online brochure. Even the five percent who don’t have a website said they intend to get one.

 

So why do our findings differ so much from the research mentioned first? Clearly, members of my audience, by definition, are smarter and higher adopters of technology than the average small business owner. After all, how could you hang around with me for very long without succumbing to the pressure, guilt and shame I lay on anyone who is not taking advantage of the Internet? To paraphrase Erich Segal, tough love means never having to say you’re sorry.

But while it’s difficult to believe that 50% of small businesses do not have a website, our 95% adoption number likely indicates that those who don’t have a website won’t admit it, even anonymously.  It might seem like twisted logic, but it’s a good thing to be self-conscience, if not embarrassed, about not having something so essential to 21st century business success.

 

Your world of customers and competitors is proceeding to dress itself up with the online capability equivalent of a tuxedo. If you’re inadequate Internet capability has you feeling uncomfortable about being uncompetitive or, worse, irrelevant, congratulations; not because you showed up at a formal event in a pair of brown shoes, but because being aware of the deficiency is the first step of many toward getting your business properly dressed for success.

Here are three of several places where you can get a website produced and hosted quickly and for low or no cost.  Yola.com, Homestead.com and Webs.com.

 

If you have a Web presence, keep improving and upgrading it. If you don’t, get one.

Recently on The Small Business Advocate Show, I talked about the importance of having a web presence with Anita Rosen, author of several books, including E-Commerce a Question and Answer Book, and e-Learning 2.0. Anita is also president of ReadyGo.com and a valued member of my Brain Trust. Click on one of the links below to listen to our conversation, and, as always, leave your comments.

 

How difficult is it for prospects to find your business online? with Anita Rosen 

How does your website serve prospects and customers? with Anita Rosen

Small business success through life-long learning

In the second century B.C., the Roman statesman, Cato, began learning Greek at the age of 75. When asked why he was undertaking such a challenging educational enterprise at his advanced age, he replied, “This is the youngest age I have.”

No matter what we do, no matter where we go, owner or employee, and now more than ever before, we must continue to study, train and learn. Everyone in your organization. Everyone. Everyday. Life-long learning.

Are you feeling threatened, maybe even frightened these days with all of the economic challenges, plus the changes brought on by the advent of the information age? Me, too. Sometimes it seems we’re like Alice - running as hard as we can just to stay in one place. And in our Wonderland, everything is changing so fast that what we learned today may be obsolete tomorrow.

The irony is that the thing that is creating so much potential for anxiety is also the thing that can help you stay competitive: Technology. Specifically, the unprecedented wealth of information available on the Internet.

When I feel threatened by all of the new knowledge and capability that’s emerging, I just make a point to learn something new everyday, with emphasis on social media and e-commerce, or how my industry is adapting to the virtual marketplace. Anything. And when I acquire that new understanding or capability, I smile like Alice’s Cheshire Cat because learning makes me feel stronger, as if I’ve gained a little ground in the marketplace. Maybe today I put the heat on a competitor. Advantage: Me.

Give it a try. The only thing better than your garden variety smile is one that comes from knowing that you just got a little smarter. And remember the wisdom of the statesman: This is the youngest age you have.

Recently, on my small business radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show, I talked about this topic with e-learning expert, Anita Rosen, author of “e-Learning 2.0,” and one of our outstanding Brain Trust members. Take a few minutes to listen to what this smart lady had to say. And, of course, be sure to leave a comment.




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